Why is his statement significant?
While World’s position on credit has been known since the issue was first raised, the statement published in Time this is the first time the former owner of West Brom has spoken out on this matter.
His statement read: “Some independent shareholders have grumbled for years since I sold the shares in 2016 when they know they have no reason to complain. I want to make it clear that the money from the football club was not borrowed to buy shares.
“There was nothing wrong or inappropriate in my relationship with West Bromwich Albion. I welcome the investigation that will put an end to the unsubstantiated comments of a small group of shareholders once and for all.
“The loan from FC West Bromwich Albion Holdings was commercial and commercially attractive at a time when cash deposits elsewhere were (and continue to receive) much lower interest rates.”
Why is it causing controversy about the loan?
The £ 3.7 million loan was made by the football club in 2014 to West Bromwich Albion, a Peace-owned company that owns the club.
In 2016, Peace sold WBA Holdings to Guochuan Lai, the current owner of West Brom, with a loan transfer as part of the sale.
It has not been redeemed, and the interest means that the outstanding amount is now almost £ 5 million.
Some shareholders believe Pease used the money to increase WBA Holdings’ 88 percent stake in the club by the time he sold Lai for £ 175 million to £ 200 million.
The world has always denied this claim.
What happens next?
At the request of the shareholders of 4 Albion, a group representing some of the smaller shareholders, West Brom called a general meeting that was postponed until the “isolation”, but will now take place on July 29 at The Hawthorns.
S4A calls for an independent investigation of the loan and for the club to use “all lawful and reasonable steps to obtain full payment with interest.”
However, while the meeting will finally give shareholders the opportunity to voice their grievances in person, Lai’s majority stake means he has the option to vote against two S4A resolutions.
(Photo: Matthew Lewis / Getty Images)